Wednesday, July 28, 2010

quick check in...

One of the things The DragonLady loves to do is shop. I fully encourage this behaviour and we have been having a right old time digging through many a store. This has been keeping me away from my beloved laptop more than usual - I feel like my mad computer skills have exponentially deteriorated.

The DragonLady hasn't seen me in about 10kilos, like any mother she is quick to notice any change in her progeny. She has been lovingly complimentary.

Weight wise I'm steady. Food wise I'm doing ok. Exercise wise I'm getting in plenty of store strolling, credit card usage and bag carrying, and, on average, gym one out of two days.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

guess I'm a Mummy's girl...

The Dragon Lady arrived this afternoon. She has outdone even my predictions of her savvy prowess. Upon landing she promptly told me she had brought very little with her. I hardly believed her because when I say that kind of thing I mean I've brought very little baggage with me, like only two bags. Two bags full to the brim of countless daft outfit concoctions that are completely inappropriate. And we're usually much alike in this realm, she usually packs above and beyond what is required. She's the Mum with tissues, bandaids and string in her handbag, just in case someone might need it. But she meant it, she brought a suitcase, barely half-full, with her. It was so light it practically carried itself off the turnstile and into my car; a few tops, a few bottoms, smalls and one pair of shoes - yup, one! How is this even possible, one pair of shoes? What was she thinking?

Astonished I ask her what she plans to wear on her feet everyday because the silver slip-ons with bows (I kid you not, she likes a snazzy shoe) she has on won't go everywhere.Then she proceeds to tell me, she loves to shop and she knows I love to shop and she knew we would shop so she brought very little with her so she could take very much home with her. This was all said in her awesome country NSW accent that made me giggle with aural glee.

She is not only wise, but she meant business. After a cup of tea and a shower she hit the stores and an hour later had three pairs of adopted american shoes to take home in her roomy suitcase. She's just flown halfway across the world without a zed of sleep. But she has her priorities. And, darn it, she wanted to start as she means to finish. Or something ambitious like that.

I love this woman, but I love her all the more when she decides something and nothing is going to stand in her way. Its a silly thing (or a silly pair of things), buying new shoes, but she set herself up for success, had her mind steeled on what she wanted and then even took the time out afterwards to bask in her success.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

be-hindsight is thirty twenty...

I am really chuffed to say I am Thirty Kilos Down.

I'm twenty off the magical X weight I am striving for (and thus, the super clever title to this post), but to be honest I'll be happy to be in the area of X; I'm nothing if not flexible :)

I'm not acutely aware of all the changes that have happened over the past thirty kilos. I've lost them over quite a length of time so the changes in my appearance have been slow and steady. I've steadily been going down in clothing sizes and finding last season's clothes are too loose - I guess, now that I think about it, I've gone down 6 sizes or thereabouts. And now I can go into pretty much any store, before that wasn't really possible; I do still have freak out moments and feel like I'm walking into a store just waiting for the sales assistant to tell me I don't belong in there (not that that ever happened to me, but anyone who has been really overweight knows how to read far more into a sales assistant saying hello and asking if they can help you with anything). I love clothes, so this is a great thing.

In the beginning of this adventure I honestly thought it was something I could focus on for a while and then I'd get to a magic happy place and I wouldn't have to think about weight loss again. I worked out pretty quickly that just doesn't work - short term quick-fixes are just that, short term. And being 50kgs overweight is not short term, its long term, who even knows how long it took to get to that point and it indicates something is seriously out of whack and has been for a while. To turn my weight and fitness situation around I had to take a pretty serious look at things.

Food wise, I was never someone who ate fast food every night, who snuck sweets or anything like that. I just seriously love food, I love the ritual involved, I love the endless combinations and, I realised, I love pretty much every food there is. Although I now know being hungry makes food taste even better, I guess I didn't really like feeling hungry, quite the opposite, I liked feeling full; I liked enjoying eating something and looking at the supply of it, knowing there was plenty more if I wanted it. I've really had to confront my habits and learn the joy of eating good food and to recognise how I feel after eating the not-so-healthy stuff. I've had to learn what healthy food I like to eat and learn to enjoy a reasonable portion of it. Luckily, I love pretty much everything. I'm still pretty diligent about calories, especially with something new, to keep my portions under control. And, I have to say, I freaking love how good I feel when I don't eat the unhealthy stuff.

Exercise wise, it was basic. I didn't do it. I found, through trial and error, things that work for me. I still don't love it - I wish I could say I do. I do love how it makes me feel though and thats better than nothing. I do also love the idea of living to a ripe old age and the evidence is there folks, so I'm "in", I'll exercise. Over the past six months or so I have really upped my cardio endurance and I can safely say I have never been as strong as I am now - the Tall Poppy in me is compelled to tell you I have plenty of room for improvement, but I am really proud of how much I've improved in this area.

By far the biggest difference over the weight loss is that I have become more me. My health, I've realised, is something I really care about, it always has been but I guess I wasn't really living truthfully in that regard, I was pretty much in an ignorant caloric bliss. If you can bare with me, I feel that by outwardly and inwardly acknowledging the importance of looking after my health and living a life that is in sync with that I have more room in my life for other things. Hopefully that makes sense, if not, know that I am super happy with where I'm at, where I'm going and how I'm getting there.

And, did I tell you, I've lost Thirty Kilos :)

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

get my groove on...

I really need to get my groove back on. For a while there I was consistently challenging myself with changing my exercise routine, trying new recipes and generally keeping healthy living in my focus. I was seeing results and feeling great. Recently I have been doing a bit of the same-old-same-old; still exercising but knowing in the back of my mind I could be doing more or at least mixing things up more; still eating reasonably well but not keeping track of everything. In short, I'm not really extending myself and to get where I want to be I know I've got some work to do.

So I had a an in-depth, albeit imaginary, conversation with Jillian this afternoon on my walk, she gave me a solid kick in the pants, screamed in my face about how I needed to get my act together, made me cry and then hugged it out with me. And you know, if you'd looked at me during this conversation all you would have seen was a woman set on pounding the pavement listening avidly to her podcast, that is the power of my and Jillian's bond, she doesn't even need to be present to whip me into a health busting frenzy. So afterwards, I said to Mr C that I think I've been in a rut with this healthy thing and we talked about how to shake things up. He was quite alot more practical than Jillian and we went straight into a brainstorm, ultimately coming up some grand ideas for workouts and meals. I'm feeling inspired and energised about giving them a whirl.

My general feeling of glumness has also hit the scales and the only change is a sad small (less than a kg) upward deviation. That'll teach me "for just knowing some poundage was about to drop" in my previous post - I should know far better than putting such statements out there, ever since my scale decided to kick its sugar-habit it can be more stubborn than a two year old in a tantrum and it will do whatever it can to prove me wrong. I might slip it some lollies and see what happens :)

Thursday, July 8, 2010

the balancing act...

I am still here...just had another visitor from afar and have been recoup-ing after the running around. Fortunately the bff sent me some coconut ice (I know, I am super lucky - maybe if I subtly write a post about every little thing I want it will appear in my mail box a few weeks later) and it has provided me with muchos energy as well as sate my long serving craving. She even sent me three different types to try - I love her big.

We have had quite a few visitors over the past couple of months and each time I have challenged myself further with walking the fine balance between obsessing over every bite and making our guests painfully aware of the fact "I am now healthy", and letting go of the reins completely and enjoying the company of my visitors over whatever appears in front of me. This time I managed to loosen the reins but not let go; the gym was involved as was some good decision making and some really great conversation over a suitably sized amber bevvy.

I will have another enlightened post soon. xx

Thursday, July 1, 2010

mindful of my fluff...

Two fit chicks recently did a podcast on intuitive eating and I loved every second of it. They cleverly suggested a more appropriate name would be mindful eating and even gave a fabulous acronym to remember it and make it a part of your life. On my walk after listening to the podcast I told Mr C all about it like I was an officiano and he was suitably impressed by my knowledge. 

All rights and credit go to Carla and Shauna, however, if I may put it in my own words the idea is to pay attention to what you eat, be mindful of what you eat and to take notice of how it makes you feel in body, mind and soul. For full details download this awesome podcast, in my opinion it is one of their best; I love them big.

I must admit I am too addicted to the scale and calorie counting to fully envelope this idea into my everyday at the moment. But, I am all for paying closer attention to how food makes me feel and I would love to one day have the hang of what this body needs and wants in appropriate proportions. So, I got half-on the intuitive bandwagon immediately and paid much closer to attention to how I felt after eating and, you know what I learnt something...let me set the scene first...

It wasn't the most typical day for me because I met with a friend at PF Changs; and since it was my first time I copied her and ate some seriously good kung pao shrimp and stir fried vegies (otherwise known as Buddha's feast - and you know, if Buddha says "feast", who am I to argue). Afterwards I browsed through Cost Plus Worldmarket, again a new experience for me, and delighted in seeing Vegemite and Bundaberg Gingerbeer on the shelves. They had the magic of Fluff there too; I'm sure a non-event to most northern americans but had me intrigued. The sales lady was beyond lovely and told me it was a marshmallow creme and was lovely on cakes, cookies or made into s'mores. So basically its a pantry essential, right? And the company has been using the same traditional recipe for over 75 years - well, if its tradition then who I am not to try this whipped spread from the angels? Besides, Mr C and I may very well build a fire, play cards and make s'mores with all our buddies from camp.

I got the Fluff home and had to try some - just a little bit - straight from the jar on a spoon. And then maybe a little bit more. Hey, its got that evil corn syrup in it and everyone knows that is kryptonite to even the best self restraint. Completely tooth-achingly sweet. Well, I can see why they haven't changed their recipe in over 75 years, anyone who trys it wants more and if the recipe changed then where would we be? Deprived, thats where. Ok, maybe not deprived per say but we'd be sad for sure. Don't even try to tell me you're not a "sweet tooth", after this stuff you'll be one whether you acknowledge it or not. 

About five minutes after I had this sugar-cloud-on-a-spoon I felt fantastic. I know this stuff is bad for me. So, I thought, thats where my intuitive eating takes me - marshmallow creme - delicious but might leaving me looking like I'm made from the stuff myself. And I reiterated to myself that intuitive eating is not for me, regardless of how its packaged - I'm mindful that I like sugar and you know what, when I eat it it makes me feel great, so there.

About two hours later I seriously thought about calling off my evening walk to Mr C's work, I was yawning and really thought I could do with a nap. I didn't know what was going on - maybe I was coming down with a cold and I thought "heavens, just as well I have the Fluff, I bet it is like a cold remedy-cure-all".

Then. A light bulb switched on, an Oprah-style Aha-moment indeed. I wasn't unwell, I was having a sugar crash. I'm about to sound like a complete idiot but I didn't think this happened to me - I thought my insulin production was so awesome and self regulated that there is no way a little extra sugar would confuse my body and give immediate energy only to zap it all away later. I was wrong. Noted. 

So I picked myself up, gave myself some slap therapy* and exercised. So maybe I can get to an intuitive place, or at least a mindful place and realise I am not an exception to the rules of physiology. 

* Slap therapy is a useful term some friends came up with - I take no credit for it (if anyone knows the one true originator let me know and I shall give credit with each use forthwith).
It is the therapeutic equivalent to giving one a "slap". Following the slap, the slappee "gets it", whatever it may be (examples range from: that man is just no good; you look fantastic and should know it; you're obsessing over something not worth your time or effort; you're just plain acting crazy girl) and is very grateful to the slapper. 
In my example I am the slappee as well as the slapper and it was the fact that I was most likely hypoglycemic following the ingestion of far too much sugar and my pancreas responding completely appropriately by producing copious amounts of insulin to deal with it, which ultimately resulted in low sugar levels.